While Target is undoubtedly a destination for a host of pragmatic everyday goods, superfans know that there are a slew of unique, special objects hiding in plain sight among the stacks of bedsheets and Up & Up paper towels.
We take great joy in hunting down these finds, especially when the holiday season rolls around. Nothing is more satisfying than being able to hit checkout on a cart that includes a gift for the hard-to-please design snob on your list along with a fresh three-pack of undershirts.
Even better, many of Target’s best and coolest goods and gewgaws don’t break the $35-dollar threshold, when comparable options from elite, aesthetically-minded retailers can boast triple-digit price tags.
Ahead, we rounded up 14 special gifts that offer more than your average department store find. If you didn’t know any better, you’d think some of these items came from a boutique — but little does anyone know, they actually came from the red dot boutique.
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A solid marble catchall tray that belongs at Kim Kardashian’s house
You have to click through the reviewer photos
to properly fall in love with this 9-inch marble catchall tray from Target’s Threshold home goods brand. With a scalloped exterior and a smooth finish, it has the ultra-minimal presence of something you’d see in the RH catalog
or Kim Kardashian’s comically minimal Hidden Hills mansion
— without the unfathomable price tag.
A multipurpose storage canister that could have come from an indie boutique
This multifunctional container boasts an earthy mix of colors and a versatile design. Lift the lid to reveal two separate stacking compartments to accommodate almost anything. The retailer shows it styled as bathroom storage, but we’d use it for nearly anything: safety pins, jewelry, craft supplies, etc.
A midcentury-style tabletop clock
Bachan’s Japanese barbecue sauce
A mainstay at the type of trendy culinary boutique that TikTok
has dubbed a “shoppy shop
,” this umami-rich soy-based sauce has a “teriyaki-ish” flavor, according to the brand, and is traditionally used to “glaze” meat and seafood dishes. Let your flavor-chasing giftee assume you made a pilgrimage to Brooklyn to painstakingly select this condiment, even if all you did was stop at your local Target.
An expensive-looking blanket scarf that comes with a matching beanie
With the same tonal colorway and fuzzy-looking knit as Acne’s oft-imitated mohair blanket scarf
, this cozy accessory from Target is a surefire way to please a fashion-forward giftee. The retailer's midweight synthetic offering comes with a beanie in a classic cable-knit design.
A stainless steel food jar for camping or commuting
Did it come from a high-end Japanese outdoor boutique
or is it just an ERA (extra-regular-ass) Thermos? This 16-ounce stainless steel food container from the original
emotional support cup brand is vacuum insulated to keep hot contents at temperature for 9 hours, and cold items chilly for up to 14. The lid doubles as a serving bowl and the foldable fork tucks neatly underneath it.
A classic holiday album that will please any vinyl enthusiast
Sure, it’s a pretty specific gift, but if you know a music nerd who has a turntable in their home, this is a surefire crowd-pleaser. If you’re anything like me, you may have the same Pavlovian response to the sounds of Vince Guaraldi’s piano and will be instantaneously transported back to wherever you spent your childhood. This edition — which comes with a splatter-print green record and a poster depicting Linus and Lucy at the piano — is exclusive to Target.
A serotonin-boosting breakfast mold
Not unlike the iconic smiley face swag
that you can find at the MoMA Design Store, this humble household object promises to deliver a dose of nostalgic cheer to your everyday environment — in this case, specifically, the breakfast table. It measures almost five inches in diameter and is made from BPA-free silicone that’s safe to use with food, and will help you turn out pancakes and omelets that are just too blessed to be stressed. (This product only has a single 3-star rating, but there’s no accompanying review — and at just $12, this feels like a risk we’re willing to take.)
A Copenhagen-ish backpack
This quilted square rucksack is clearly borrowing something from the Scandi-cool likes of luggage imprints like Fjallraven
, minus the premium price point. The 14.5-inch bag can be worn as a backpack or carried like a tote via drop handle. It’s available in five colors, but the brilliant orangey-red caught our eye, and it’s sure to make an impression on your recipient, too. It boasts adjustable shoulder straps, an interior laptop pocket and an exterior pocket for a water bottle. For a smaller version of this look, try Target’s mini Paxton
A pair of oversized sterling silver hoops
The hefty tube hoop earring
has become a staple at intimidating fashion boutiques. Prices vary depending on the brand and construction, but we’ve never seen a sterling silver pair at such a low price. They're a little over an inch in height, making for a perfect not-too-big, not-too-small accessory that will complement a variety of ensembles. (Reviewers note that the posts can be fragile, so handle with care.)
A adorably retro Christmas ornament
Just smile and nod when everyone asks you about the out-of-the-way antique shop where you scored this “vintage” reindeer ornament. The pink ceramic confection is decorated with (what else) fluttering doe eyes, a tiny red nose and plenty of gold accents. It measures about 3 inches in height.
A pair of all-purpose lounge-shorts to inspire your next vacation
These 100% cotton shorts — created by Burkina Faso-bred designer Georgie Badiel Liberty — boast a batik-style motif inspired by African wax prints
. They have a drawstring waist and a loose fit, perfect for wearing around the house any time of year. They’re available in women’s sizes XS–XXL, and also come in a solid pink or a vine-adorned botanical print.
A nostalgic gift that almost anyone can enjoy
I can’t believe I just used “nostalgic” as a descriptor for a disposable camera, and yet… Regardless, folks at any age will get a kick out of this pre-smartphone-era mainstay. Its artist-designed wrapping is a step up from the standard drugstore packaging, and your recipient can get their film developed at a number of participating CVS locations
A multipurpose meditation pillow
For the crunchiest person on your list, try this highly-rated meditation pillow that definitely could have some from the local health food store or hippie emporium. It's 16 inches in diameter and the removable recycled polyester cover is machine-washable.